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Newham College

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Overview

Newham College, East London, provide education that is exciting, relevant and practical; equipping students with the skills and knowledge to unleash their potential and make them stand out when they apply for that all important first job or start the next stage in their education and career.

The college is constantly investing to make sure they keep pace with the business world’s rapid technological advances and their state-of-the-art facilities provide industry standard learning environments. 

With excellent links with businesses, professionals and industry experts and programmes, endorsed by Samsung their focus is for their students to succeed.

Newham had the need to redesign the current website to improve the search functionality, and the user experience of students looking for the right course, and to encourage them to take the course in their local area.  They also had different audience types that needed a search capability to ensure that only the right information was delivered to help their needs.

They also needed to introduce the separation of the NUC (higher education) brand from the main Newham College London site to only show courses specifically for higher education students.

The Challenge

User Experience

Through research Pixl8 determined that the usability and user journeys of the site could be improved.

It was important that the site requirements were understood from a Stakeholders and students’ perspective.   Pixl8 had to ensure that they were in tune with the Stakeholders thinking but also establish what the student user experience should be.  Interviews took place with the students, who gave their input based on their experience of enrolling onto a course, and what their expectations would be if they were enrolling again. 

Multiple Audiences

The site had to be designed for multiple audience use, meeting the needs of 16-18 year olds, school leavers, employers, parents and apprentices within the local community.  All needed to be able to search for the right content, content that was relevant. 

“Pixl8’s design and technical team understood this and came up with a clean and clear way of how the right content could be searched and delivered to the right audience set”  says Newham's Web Manager, Sheik Sakhabuth. 

Content Migration & Management

The third challenge was content and storage capabilities.  All the content on the existing site and from the course database had to be exported and augmented into the new CMS, bringing all the silos of content together for an improved user experience.

This is a key issue for college websites, where they need to blend the more structured content from their course management systems and augment it with richer web authored content. Preside, the content management system, is well suited here as it has complete flexibility to determine the structure of content types to suit the individual organisation requirements.  Additionally, all the content types are indexed by a powerful Elasticsearch system which gives a great search experience and supports relevancy and content discovery. 

Outcome

From a visitor’s perspective, after the redesign, the new site is much more intuitive to use with related content easier to find and a fully responsive experience on mobile and tablet.  An online chat facility is also now available which enables the user to receive answers to questions but also for the college to convert leads quickly.

Multiple routes for users to access the courses that they need have been created and all content is now searchable by multiple audiences. 

A fresh take on the brand means that everything produced is now consistent year on year, even down to the yearly prospectus which is future proofed in the same design and core brand colours.

In Preside the college has a clean and intuitive content management system that is much more intuitive to use and robust than the previous CMS system. 

The new microsite for the NUC (higher education) creates separation from the main college site and gives the audience only the courses relevant to them and the information they need. 

 

Take a look at the new Newham website design at www.newham.ac.uk and see for yourself.

Whether you have established requirements or need assistance in creating a business case for digital, we’re happy to help. Contact us for more information